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NEWS
March 4, 2012 | By Kristin E. Holmes, Inquirer Staff Writer
They walked in wearing matching T-shirts, banged on drums, and waved posters and flags as though cheering a home team. They were, in a way. They were celebrating the virtues of the schools they love in a plea to save them. That was the message Saturday as scores of students, faculty, parents, and community members attended a daylong hearing of the School Reform Commission. It was the last chance for supporters to make their case for schools the School District of Philadelphia has targeted for closing.
NEWS
January 12, 2016 | BY JEROME KING & TERRELL PRICE
ONLY ONE out of 10 ninth-graders in the School District of Philadelphia graduates college. That's right, only 10 percent. Those were the odds we faced as freshmen at Simon Gratz High School, a neighborhood school in North Philadelphia. But when we were rising seniors, we got lucky: The school was selected to undergo a charter turnaround as part of the Renaissance initiative. Today, we're both enrolled in college and on track to graduate. Let us be clear: We would not be where we are today without Renaissance.
NEWS
January 18, 2000 | By David Boldt
Trying to do some out-of-the-box thinking that might make Mayor Street's meeting with Gov. Ridge on education funding next week something other than a remake of Gunfight at the OK Corral, I have come up with a couple of suggestions. One would be for the mayor, before the meeting, to turn over to the school district a major portion of the record $206 million surplus the city amassed last year. By putting money where his mouth is, the mayor could suppress the argument - often heard in Harrisburg - that not even city officials think lack of money is the problem in the city schools, as shown by the fact that Philadelphia spends much less on education, proportionally, than other cities.
NEWS
September 6, 2013 | By Martha Woodall, Inquirer Staff Writer
With the opening of city schools five days away, contract talks between the Philadelphia School District and the teachers' union continued Wednesday without reaching a tentative agreement, both sides said. George Jackson, a spokesman for the 15,000-member Philadelphia Federation of Teachers, said the district and the union would take a break Thursday to observe Rosh Hashanah. Negotiations are set to resume Friday. Also Wednesday, Jackson said the union had put on hold new ads blaming Mayor Nutter and Gov. Corbett for the district's financial crisis because PFT president Jerry Jordan is scheduled to meet with the mayor later this week.
SPORTS
February 23, 1999 | by Dick Jerardi, Daily News Sports Writer
The idea of a tournament among the city's six Division I basketball schools has been around for more than a decade, almost since Big 5 games began moving to campus sites and certainly since Villanova opted out of the full round robin. Play the tournament over a weekend in December with two teams getting byes (or invite two among Delaware, Princeton and Penn State and make it an eight-team tournament). Try any of the dozen formats that have been suggested. Get corporate sponsorship.
NEWS
August 9, 2012
By Baruch Kintisch Local and state education officials have been pretending that school results are independent of school resources - that children can swim in a pool that's been drained. Policymakers have focused on test scores, restructuring plans, and other outwardly visible factors. But they don't seem to be asking the more fundamental questions: What resources do Philadelphia children need to succeed? And how can we give those resources to every child? Learning happens when skilled, experienced teachers execute well-prepared lesson plans, when every student has a current textbook, and when classrooms have adequate space, heat, and air-conditioning.
NEWS
January 24, 1990 | By Susan Levine, Inquirer Staff Writer
There's a woman in the top job at the Chelsea school department this year. Her name's Diana Lam and she's both the first woman and the first Hispanic superintendent in the city's history. But that is not what makes her appointment remarkable. The fact is, the people who hired Lam last summer don't sit on the local school board. They work for Boston University and hold titles such as dean of education. It's BU that is paying Lam's $75,000 salary, and BU to whom Lam is ultimately accountable.
NEWS
June 9, 2014 | By Thomas Fitzgerald, Inquirer Politics Writer
An offshoot of New York state's Working Families Party has been striving under the radar for the last six months to push Philadelphia-area politics and policy leftward. Pennsylvania Working Families helped win voter approval May 20 of a City Charter change requiring city subcontractors to pay their workers a "living wage" above the federal minimum. And last week, its canvassers turned in just under 40,000 petition signatures to put a nonbinding resolution on the November ballot demanding an end to state control of Philadelphia schools.
NEWS
December 17, 2012 | By Suzette Parmley, Inquirer Staff Writer
Passionate pleas from students and others Saturday put William R. Hite Jr. on the defensive just three months into his job as superintendent of the Philadelphia School District. Hite got an earful during a two-hour public meeting over his recommendations to close or relocate 44 schools throughout the city. "Our children are not for sale!" exclaimed Gail Clouden, 57, a community activist from West Philadelphia. "People are not for sale!" To which Hite responded: "This has to do with funding, and when you don't have funds, you have to make the best use of the money you have.
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ARTICLES BY DATE
NEWS
February 2, 2016 | BY ANTHONY HARDY WILLIAMS
WHEN IT COMES to fighting for parents and families of the children in our public schools, School Reform Commission member Sylvia Simms pulls no punches. That makes her a hero to me and to the thousands of Philadelphia families who can't wait any longer for quality public education. Simms made headlines last week following her decision to support the turnaround of the Wister Elementary School in Germantown. Like it or not, let's at least acknowledge that it took guts for her to advocate that Mastery Charter Schools should be allowed once again to lead the Wister turnaround effort.
NEWS
January 31, 2016 | By Jack Tomczuk, Staff Writer
State lawmakers want to hold hearings on the physical condition of Pennsylvania's schools, State Sen. Vincent J. Hughes announced Friday at Locke Elementary, which lost heat last week, sending students home for the day. The legislator also asked the state Education Department to audit the Philadelphia School District. Hughes' announcement was, in part, a response to a boiler explosion this month at Edmonds Elementary School in East Mount Airy, which left a maintenance employee critically injured.
NEWS
January 25, 2016 | By Mike Newall, Inquirer Columnist
I went to embattled City Commissioner Anthony Clark's office Friday morning with a detailed list of things the city could be paying for if it wasn't paying him. Alas, the high-paid chairman of the city's election board - who rarely shows up for work, has failed to vote in six recent elections, and claims to be earning his paycheck even while on six-week pilgrimages on the other side of the world - was busy that morning: He was out getting tea...
NEWS
January 21, 2016 | By Kristen A. Graham, Staff Writer
First, Mayor Kenney handled the important business: reading a picture book called My Friends to a group of spellbound 4-year-olds. Next, he talked about what he calls one of the biggest priorities of his administration: opening prekindergarten seats to "as many children as we can reach. " Kenney and Pedro Rivera, Pennsylvania's top education official, traveled Tuesday to a Northeast early-childhood education center to tout the recent release of state funds that will pay for 1,500 new prekindergarten seats.
NEWS
January 12, 2016 | BY JEROME KING & TERRELL PRICE
ONLY ONE out of 10 ninth-graders in the School District of Philadelphia graduates college. That's right, only 10 percent. Those were the odds we faced as freshmen at Simon Gratz High School, a neighborhood school in North Philadelphia. But when we were rising seniors, we got lucky: The school was selected to undergo a charter turnaround as part of the Renaissance initiative. Today, we're both enrolled in college and on track to graduate. Let us be clear: We would not be where we are today without Renaissance.
NEWS
January 9, 2016 | By Kristen A. Graham, Staff Writer
The Philadelphia School District on Thursday announced the top schools in the city, calling out strong traditional public and public charter schools for their academic performance, growth, and safety. Superintendent William R. Hite Jr. and Mayor Kenney lauded the leaders at a ceremony at Anne Frank Elementary in Northeast Philadelphia, named the city's leading elementary school for the third straight year. Tops among K-8 schools is Penn Alexander School in West Philadelphia; the highest-ranked middle school is Masterman, a magnet school in Center City; the leading high school is Central, a magnet school in Logan.
NEWS
December 23, 2015 | By Kristen A. Graham, Staff Writer
The Pennsylvania Department of Education has declared deficient curricula at four Philadelphia schools where parents complained after budget cuts forced sharp program reductions. It is a "significant victory" for parents, education activists said, a signal that the state Department of Education is taking seriously its responsibility to monitor city schools' curricula and take action when necessary. Parents from 75 Philadelphia School District schools filed 825 complaints detailing problems caused by budget cuts two years ago, issues ranging from a lack of arts and physical education to the absence of gifted programs.
NEWS
December 15, 2015
Pennsylvania Senate Majority Leader Jake Corman (R., Centre) said Sunday he plans to introduce legislation that would privatize the Philadelphia Parking Authority, generating what he said would be more money for city schools. In an email sent to fellow senators, Corman said a privately operated parking authority would "become a much more valuable asset to the public and the Philadelphia School District by having the authority's commercial practices run by an actual business operator.
NEWS
December 13, 2015 | By Kristen A. Graham, Inquirer Staff Writer
Tucked into a late-night school-code bill passed by the Pennsylvania Senate this week are details that some education-watchers - including the Philadelphia superintendent - say could cripple city schools. Aimed squarely at the Philadelphia School District, the "opportunity schools" language would remove from local control up to five low-performing schools per year. The state Department of Education would seize the struggling schools for at least three years, with the option to either turn them over to a charter or outside manager, or close them.
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